SBD/13/Franchises

BALLPARK FIGURE: MENARD REVEALS BUYOUT AMOUNT OF BROCHU

          Expos Chair Jacques Menard said yesterday that the
     reported C$15M that Expos President Claude Brochu "will
     command" to sell his 7.6% share of the team "is in the
     ballpark," according to Stephanie Myles of the Montreal
     GAZETTE.  Menard: "We have agreed in principle on a range
     and a general figure that is about of that magnitude, as
     regards the economics part.  But a deal hasn't been signed
     yet, and it hasn't been put to our shareholders -- much less
     to [MLB]."  Menard said that the timetable for buying out
     Brochu and the 52 days remaining in the 150-day limit set by
     MLB to put a new ownership group in place are "are
     independent" of each other.  He also said that former
     Canadiens GM Serge Savard is "not waiting in the wings to
     succeed Brochu."  Menard added that "other significant non-
     monetary issues still need to be resolved" before a deal
     with Brochu is finalized, such as how the team will be run
     until new ownership is established (Montreal GAZETTE, 1/13).
     Expos' ownership group will meet today "to decide" whether
     to offer Brochu C$15M for his share (GLOBE & MAIL, 1/13).
          TIME KEEPS ON TICKING: In Montreal, Jack Todd writes
     that the Expos "are running out of time" to assemble a new
     ownership group and that the team has accomplished "little"
     because of the slow pace of negotiations with Brochu.  Expos
     Limited Partner Mark Routtenberg "won't deny" that Savard
     could possibly run the team, but said: "We have to know from
     [MLB].  Is Claude Brochu the control person until a stadium
     deal is lined up?" (Montreal GAZETTE, 1/13).

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